Green meets blue today at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium, when the Cal Poly baseball team visits UCSB for a solo game, nonconference series. It will be the first of two series meetings between the two teams this year, but will not count toward either team’s Big West record.
“You can only have a certain amount of conference games,” senior outfielder Joe Wallace said. “Because [Cal Poly is] close in location it’s easy to have a Tuesday game with them.”
The two teams are currently tied for the No. 2 spot in the Big West Conference with 4-2 records in league play. Outside of conference, the Mustangs have the edge in the win column with a 20-10 tally over UCSB’s 16-14 overall record.
Cal Poly has won four of its last five games, all of which were played at Baggett Stadium on the Cal Poly campus. With a combined score of 23-11 through the past five games, the Mustangs have proven to have an offensive advantage. The strongest hitter for the Mustangs has been senior shortstop Mike Miller, who currently holds a .365 batting average. Miller sported a 14-game hitting streak at the beginning of the season and also tops the team in doubles (10) and runs scored (34). Cal Poly sophomores Jimmy Allen and David Armendariz trail Miller at No. 2 and No. 3 on the team in batting average, with .333 and .309, respectively. Armendariz added to his total this past weekend with a stellar 4-4 performance during an 8-1 win over UC Irvine.
Cal Poly currently boasts the No. 3 ranked pitching staff in the Big West with a combined 3.32 ERA. Starter Joey Wagman holds a 5-2 record on the year with a 2.05 ERA, while Kyle Anderson has maintained a similar 5-1 record with a 2.18 ERA and Kyle Brueggemann has compiled a 4-2 record with a 4.01 ERA.
For the Gauchos, sophomore second baseman Brandon Trinkwon leads the offense with a .396 batting average and 21 RBIs. Following closely behind are freshman Greg Mahle with a .392 batting average and 22 RBIs, junior outfielder Brett Vertigan with a .386 batting average and 19 RBIs and senior left fielder Lance Roenicke with a .319 batting average and 19 RBIs.
“We usually have a pretty balanced scoring attack,” Wallace said. “Those guys have been doing it for us all year long.”
Roenicke and Trinkwon are tied for No. 2 on the squad with two home runs apiece, while senior outfielder Joey Wallace leads UCSB with three homers on the season.
The Gaucho defense and pitching staff have improved as of late, compiling a 3.85 ERA on the season and committing only 40 errors in 30 games, good enough for a .966 fielding percentage. Freshman lefthander Andrew Vasquez leads the team from the mound with a 5-2 record and a 1.10 ERA, and only gave up three hits in six innings last weekend against Cal State Northridge.
“[Our success] starts with our pitching,” Wallace said. “[Our pitchers] went out last weekend and trusted the defense behind them.
First pitch is set for 2 p.m. today.